Statement regarding Human Fertilisation and Embryology (Mitochondrial Donation) Regulations 2015

On Friday, Bishop John Sherrington issued the following statement on behalf of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales regarding the upcoming debate in parliament for proposals by the HFEA for Mitochondrial Donations (three parent children):

Many people are rightly concerned about the profound implications of Parliament passing regulations under the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act to licence the creation of human embryos using the DNA of three people. These are regulations for the transfer of ‘nuclear DNA’ into an egg or an embryo to modify its genetic identity. No other country has allowed this procedure and the international scientific community is not convinced that the procedure is safe and effective. It seems extraordinary that a licence should be sought for a radical new technique affecting future generations without first conducting a clinical trial. There are also serious ethical objections to this procedure which involves the destruction of human embryos as part of the process. The human embryo is a new human life, and it should be respected and protected from the moment of conception. This is a very serious step which Parliament should not rush into taking.

Bishop John Sherrington – CBCEW Department for Christian Responsibility and Citizenship

In addition, Bishop Sherrington sent a letter and briefing to all Members of Parliament in preparation for the debate and vote this week.  [Click here for the letter]  [Click here for the briefing note].

The people of the Archdiocese of Cardiff are encouraged to pray for inspiration of the Holy Spirit upon parliament during this important debate. The implications of this amendment to the HFEA are wide ranging as can be seen from Bishop Sherrington’s briefing note.

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